Grade 12 student Max Miller at Oak Bay High collected 60 pairs of gently used basketball sneakers that others can use. Miller calls it Beaters to Heaters though many of the shoes are like new and all are in good condition. He is reaching out to basketball programs around town to offer the shoes and also gather more. (Travis Paterson/News Staff)

Grade 12 student Max Miller at Oak Bay High collected 60 pairs of gently used basketball sneakers that others can use. Miller calls it Beaters to Heaters though many of the shoes are like new and all are in good condition. He is reaching out to basketball programs around town to offer the shoes and also gather more. (Travis Paterson/News Staff)

Oak Bay teen’s ‘Beaters to heaters’ passes basketball shoes to new feet

Student athlete gathers gently used shoes to share with others

He calls it Beaters to Heaters.

Oak Bay High student Max Miller, in Grade 12, has collected 60 pairs of gently used basketball sneakers to share with those who might not be able to afford them.

It’s been a big response considering he only put the word out last week.

“Sizes five to 15 but not many women’s shoes, that’s something we still need,” Miller said.

It’s something he’s wanted to do since he was in middle school. His parents are supporting it by letting him use a room at home.

“We’ve added shelves so we can keep them there,” Miller said. “I’ve already had people reaching out to request the shoes.”

Basketball players, like sneakerheads, are big on their shoes and basketball shoes have become a big market. A proper pair ranges in price from $150 to $300. If Miller was able to play for Oak Bay this year his shoes would have cost well over $200, he said.

READ ALSO: High school athletes remain on the sidelines across B.C.

“It’s something I’ve always noticed. In Night League, and at other schools, not everyone had good shoes,” Miller said. “In [middle school] I saw a player on another team who did not have great shoes for the court so I gave him my shoes.”

It’s safe to say Miller is pretty careful with his basketball sneakers. He keeps them in fine shape and has passed them all on through the years.

This year Miller took the initiative to activate the idea because there are so many families in need. Over the winter break the Bays’ senior basketball team “adopted” a family of four and Miller found out that the two boys played basketball.

“I immediately went to my closet to see if I had any shoes that would fit them. I didn’t.”

The plan now is to reach out to other schools to see if he can offer some of the shoes but also to see if he can add a few pairs. Miller has also considered expanding to include soccer and rugby shoes.

“Yesterday Camosun College gave me 10 pairs, some are six years old but they’re brand new.”

Miller is planning to catalogue all the shoes and will run the program for a year and see how it goes. He hopes it’s something that continues and that he can eventually pass on.

“You don’t see this kind of maturity and initiative from a high school student every day,” said Oak Bay High athletic director Rich Fast. “We’re very proud of Max. The cost of dance shoes, and sports shoes, it gets up there. Feeding kids can be hard enough let along affording extra activities. This is a nice light to shine right now.”

Miller is available by email at

oak bay

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A pedestrian pushing a child in a stroller was struck by a driver while crossing a Highway 1 off-ramp at Burnside Road West on Feb. 24. (Google Streetview)
Pedestrian with child in stroller struck by driver in Saanich crosswalk

Incident occurred in crosswalk in Highway 1 off-ramp at Burnside Road West

Sooke Road was down to single lane alternating traffic after a motor vehicle incident Wednesday morning. (Google Maps)
UPDATED: Sooke Road reopen after motor vehicle incident

Emergency crews were on scene of Wednesday morning incident

West Shore RCMP headquarters in Langford. (Black Press Media file photo)
West Shore RCMP arrests two suspects in connection to View Royal arson

Investigators determined the fire was deliberately set, targeted

Visitors to Island View Beach Regional Park in Central Saanich could end up paying for parking. (Black Press Media File)
Proposed parking fees for Island View Beach under fire

Central Saanich councillor says timing could not be worse

A BC Ferries worker out of Swartz Bay has tested positive for COVID-19. (Black Press Media file photo)
Swartz Bay ferry worker confirmed to have COVID-19

Employees in direct contact with worker now isolating

B.C. health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and health minister Adrian Dix wore pink shirts to showcase this year’s motto: “Lift each other up.” (Twitter/PinkShirtDay)
PHOTOS: B.C. celebs take a stand against bullying on Pink Shirt Day

‘We need to let young people know they are not alone and they can reach out to others for help’

Justin Morissette is still recovering from the injuries sustained in the altercation. He is not yet able to walk without assistance. (Justin Morissette, Twitter)
B.C. man suing city and police over violent altercation with anti-LGBTQ preacher

Justin Morissette argues police knew the threat the preacher posed, and failed to keep the peace

Mowi Canada West salmon farm in B.C. waters. Conservative MPs have backed an industry call for further discussions on the timeline for closing Discovery Island farms. (Photo supplied by Mowi Canada)
Conservative MPs back B.C. salmon farmers’ call for transparent discussions

Farm owners requested consultations, more time to leave Discovery Islands

Jack Barnes, who was Cowichan Valley Capitals property from May 2020 until last week, scores a goal for the Penticton Vees during the 2019-20 BCHL season. (Brennan Phillips/Black Press)
COVID-crunched BCHL facing trade deadline dilemma with its 20-year-olds

Hard decisions loom when BCHL may or may not resume play

UBC Okanagan students are among the most food insecure in Canada, according to a new study by UBC.
(Phil McLachlan - Capital News)
UBC Okanagan students among most food insecure in Canada

42.3 per cent either can’t properly feed themselves, or are worried they will soon run out of money

A Nanaimo RCMP vehicle in the Woodgrove Centre parking lot. (News Bulletin file photo)
Woman groped by stranger in mall parking lot in Nanaimo

Incident happened near bus loop Saturday, Feb. 20, at about 4:45 p.m.

A 19-year-old man is in police custody following a recent violent robbery and assault in Comox . (File photo)
Arrest made in violent robbery and assault of Comox gas station employee

19-year-old man in police custody after incident where woman was putting things in her car

COVID cases in the Bella Coola Valley have dropped to just four active cases (file photo)
Expanding social circles fuelling North Island COVID-19 spike

Comox Valley COVID spike the result of ‘a series of multiple social gatherings’

Average response times for critical “purple” and “red” calls were between nine and 10 minutes Feb. 19 in Metro Vancouver, with only less critical “yellow” calls receiving an average response time of 45 minutes. The longer than usual delay was due to a combination of factors, BC Emergency Health Services said. (APBC image)
After a night of one-hour waits for ambulances, union goes public with concerns

B.C. Ambulance Service says high-priority calls were still 10 minutes or less

Most Read